Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

John Hertig


As the online marketplace continues to expand, more patients are turning to the internet for their needs, including COVID-19 pharmaceuticals. However, the current online marketplace is saturated with illegal sellers offering substandard and falsified (SF) products with the potential of causing harm to patients. The primary objective of this thesis is to identify documented cases of harm resulting from illegal online sale of SF COVID-19 related drug or vaccine products. This review utilizes reports by the Medicines Quality Monitoring Globe (MQM Globe) to assess patient harm associated with illegal online sales of COVID-19 marketed pharmaceuticals. This review found 28 references to drug products or vaccines sold illegally online; however, none of these reported specific cases of harm resulting from this activity. This report represents a year in review from January 2020 until December 2020. Currently, COVID-19 vaccine products have been granted emergency use authorizations by the US FDA. As the hopeful end to this pandemic draws near, it is vital to retrospectively evaluate healthcare supply chain vulnerabilities, particularly the complexities added by expanding use of the internet worldwide.